Two men rescued after they're thrown from their boat on Lake Ida near Alexandria
Two men were thrown from their boat on Lake Ida north of Alexandria during high winds Sunday morning and were rescued a few minutes later.
At about 10:15 a.m., the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call that the two had been thrown into the water near Stoney Point and that the empty boat was still in motion, circling nearby.
Douglas County deputies and the Water Patrol responded. While they were en route, they learned that both men were rescued from the water by another boater but the boat was still spinning unattended.
Deputies arrived, located the circling boat and were able to stop it by using a tow rope technique to stop the prop on the motor.
Initial investigation found the operator, Ethan Sigler, 18, of Cottage Grove and his passenger, Conner Sigler, 21, also of Cottage Grove were traveling south on Lake Ida, north of Stoney Point where they had been fishing. Their 14-foot aluminum boat took a large wave, causing the boat to suddenly change direction and throwing both parties into the water.
The boat’s 15-horsepower tiller motor continued to operate, causing the boat to spin in a tight circle.
A nearby boater, Wade Simonette, 43, of Henderson, saw the incident and pulled both parties out of the water. It was discovered life jackets were in the boat but were not worn and the tether to the motors kill switch was not used.
No one was injured in the incident.
Strong southeast winds between 20 and 25 mph and high waves were a factor in the incident, according to the sheriff’s office.
The boat was towed back to shore.
The sheriff's office reminds everyone to be safe on the water by using life jackets and safety equipment, like engine tether cords while operating a boat, especially in rough water, and to check local forecasts for changes in weather.